Thursday, 27 February 2014

Our New Zealand Love Affair....

Early August my then Boyfriend (now Fiance´) and I decided we wanted to go to the snow but knowing how crazy expensive the snow in Australia is we opted for a fleeting visit to Queenstown (heaven on earth). 

We ended up booking 4 days in Queenstown, staying at the Kawarau Hotel, next to the Hilton, on Lake Wakitipu.

We flew out of Melbourne's Tullarmarine Airport early Monday the 16th of September on a Jetstar flight direct to Queenstown. I have never actually flown Jetstar before but I was quite impressed the hostesses were attentive and genuinely pleased to be helping you. 

The flight from Melbourne to Queenstown is a short 3.5hr flight which, excuse the pun, flies by.
But nothing prepared us for the sight that was awaiting us as we approached the coastline of New Zealand. I looked up from my puzzle book looked out the window and thought to myself hmmm more clouds... then I did a double take those weren't clouds they were a sea of snow capped mountains as far as the eye could see. Breathtaking is not even near the right word to describe the beauty and amazement of the view out our tiny plane window.

Being from Melbourne the biggest mountain I had ever seen was the Dandenong Ranges so you can imagine how the sight of these monstrous mountains just blew my mind.
We landed and as we walked out onto the tarmac the freshness in the air was nothing my lungs had experienced and then we look up and we were surrounded by The Remarkables and Coronet Peak and a array of mountains that made this little lady feel oh so minuscule but in a good way. You can really appreciate the beauty in this world that we generally take for granted when greeted with such a jaw dropping sight.

Queenstown still has this small town, remote feel to it even though it is bustling with tourists all huddling into buses ready to head up the mountains for their skiing trips.
The streets are rustic and country like but also like you are somewhere in the swiss alps.

(and this is where I almost lost my post silly mac smart mouse *sigh*)

The one thing we noticed with having a car in Queenstown is that there is NO free parking in the day you have to pay for parking everywhere and it isn't cheap either. Also you generally have a bit of a walk ahead of you when you have found a park because it is quite busy all day long in town.

Queenstown seriously has an amazing choice for places to eat if you like Japanese we seriously recommend Hikari Izakaya. If you like Nobu style Japanese this is the closest you will get to the real thing. 

The first day we were there we actually arrived quite late in the afternoon so it consisted of dinner and watching the fire jugglers in the Queenstown Mall after dark.

Our next day we adventured up to Coronet Peak Snow Fields. The view from up here is just breath taking. 

You would think by the look of us that it was absolutely freezing cold but actually we were sweating up a storm it really wasn't that mild when we were there and unfortunately no natural snow.
But we went up and attempted to learn snowboarding.... I don't know why i even tried. I lasted all of 10mins and freaked out and wanted off the snow fields lol I felt so bad for my love he had been looking forward to trying this and I just couldn't cut it.

But the amazing man he is he always makes the most of every situation.

So down we went ......

We instead started planning all these amazing things to see while we were here.
Like the 360 Jet Boats on Lake Wakitipu (Which is the most fun I have had in a very long time)
We were so blessed to have the whole boat to ourselves and the boat came to the Hilton Jetty and picked us up so we didn't have to pay for parking and for no extra cost!

 We spent the night on a star gazing tour up at the Skyline.
It was FREEZING! But they supply you with Canadian Goose Down Jackets with Racoon lined collars. They really are needed.
The guide gives you some basic knowledge of astronomy which is great if you are a newbie.
And afterwards they warm you up with a lovely hot chocolate.

Our next day we booked a flight to the Milford Sound where we went on a cruise down the Fjord. 

The cruise was amazing you get a banquet lunch supplied (but keep in mind all these tourists you see in this picture rushed in straight away and ate most of it before we got on board)
We got to see some baby penguins and some seal cubs sun baking on the rocks as well as learn all about the history of the Fjord and enjoy the most peaceful cruise we could have asked for.

Our flight back was amazing Scott got to ride in the front so he got to see more than any of us! (lucky duck)
If you ever get the chance to fly to Milford Sound do, you get to experience the beauty of the country that no one else can see from the ground!

That night we went to the Onsen Hot Pools at Arthurs Point.... This is the most beautiful and relaxing activity you can opt for if you ever go to Queenstown.
We had a late booking which means we got to soak in the Hot Pools under the stars. The roof actually folds away so that you can relax under the stars... super romantic!!!

The next day was our last day in Queenstown and the greatest by far!
We had breakfast on the waterfront and had a small exploration away from Queenstown.
No matter if you are in the heart of Queenstown or on the outskirts the beauty is everywhere!

We then had lunch at Hikari Izakaya again and then my amazing man organised a  helicopter flight up to one of the snow capped mountains... We landed on Mt Vanguard which is located just behind Coronet Peak. Nothing can compare to the view and the freshness up there!

But more than that nothing can compare to what happened next....

While we were taking photos of the scenery Scott asked me to turn around and face the mountains behind me so he could take a nice photo of me looking at The Remarkables once I had been standing there for a while he asks me to turn around and my heart skipped a beat there he was kneeling on one knee holding that distinctive Tiffany and Co. ring box and nothing could hold back my tears of joy when he uttered those four small words 
"Will you marry Me?" ....

My Dreams came true on this mountain top!

Scott always warned me that I would never know when and I would never expect how and he truly went above and beyond.

Thank you Honey for blessing me with this amazing memory that I will cherish for all time!

He then had dinner booked at the Skyline Restaurant. 

The Gondola ride up the the Skyline is amazing and a must do!!

Then he had another night at the Onsen Hot Pools planned ... but this time with a platter of grapes, chocolate and wine!

He made me feel like a real princess!

And this Princess has found her Prince Charming for life! xo

But this story isn't ending here ..... it's only beginning!

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